Jesus Herrada sandwiched between team mates Alejandro Valverde and Vladimir Karpets at Tour de Suisse 2012 (image courtesy of Movistar)
If you were watching the Tour de Suisse on Wednesday, you’ll have seen Jesus Herrada riding near the front of the peloton, indulging in a spot of face-pulling, as Movistar led home the pack in the final kilometres – preserving the leader’s jersey for Rui Costa on stage 5, 192.7km from Trimbach t0 Gansingen. At 21, Jesus is the baby of the team, which he joined last year after stellar results in the junior and espoir ranks. He’s a double national junior and U23 time-trial champion.
Meanwhile, his brother Jose – five years older – who finished fourth in last year’s Route du Sud while riding for Caja Rural, competes in this year’s race in Movistar colours. Yes, the boys have realised a much cherished ambition to ride together on the same team.
This year’s 76th edition of the Tour de Suisse is the last big stage race before the Tour de France. Riders who aren’t racing the Critérium du Dauphiné will be using this to do their last bit of form racing. Sprinters, in particular, use this race to prepare for the Tour de France.
What kind of race is it?
The Tour de Suisse is a nine-day stage race which, like the Critérium du Dauphiné, combines mountain climbs with time trials to give the riders a flavour of the upcoming Tour de France. The Tour de Suisse is one of the 12 European stage races in the UCI WorldTour Calendar. The last five winners of the race were:
2007 Vladimir Karpets (Caisse d’Epargne)
2008 Roman Kreuziger (Liquigas)
2009 Fabian Cancellara (Saxo Bank)
2010 Frank Schleck (Saxo Bank)
2011 Levi Leipheimer (RadioShack) Continue reading
Welcome to our preview of what’s happening in the world of road cycling in June. With the Giro done and dusted, this month is all about the build-up to the start of the biggest race of them all: the Tour de France. The two major build-up races will give all the key contenders for Paris a chance to blow away the cobwebs and get a good workout under racing conditions, although those with great form may wish not to show their hand entirely at this point. With the eyes of the world and the entire peloton gazing down on the riders, it will be interesting to see who is racing flat out and who is holding back just a little bit. Continue reading